Mentioning a holiday to Peru almost inevitably evokes images of Machu Picchu and the Inca Empire. Lovely as they are, there's SO much more to the third largest country in Latin America.
Machu Picchu and Cusco rightly claim the plaudits as Peru's luxury holiday highlights, and when you arrive it's pretty easy to see what all the fuss is about, but spectacular as they are, the Inca era accounts for just a small fraction of Peru's history. The country contains many historic sites from previous civilisations, as well as fine colonial-era towns such as the UNESCO World Heritage town of Arequipa, hip beach resorts that are perfect for surfing, marvellous mountain scenery and even Amazon rainforest thrown in for good measure.
That's a lot to take in, but after several research trips in recent years our Latin America team knows Peru extremely well. Aside from arranging luxury holidays tailored to include Cusco, the ancient capital of the Inca Empire, and Machu Picchu - either by train through the Sacred Valley or on foot along the Inca or Salkantay Trails - we can also advise on the best itinerary to take in what is one of the most richly biodiverse countries on earth. Habitats range from Amazonian jungle to snow-clad Andes, home to famous species such as the puma and condor, and make this one of those special countries where everything is under one roof, so to speak. The mysterious Nazca Lines, high-altitude Lake Titicaca, the upper reaches of the Amazon and the bustling metropolis of Lima are amongst the country's other attractions we can weave into any luxury holiday itinerary.
And while we're on the subject of Lima, the capital is the centre of a wonderful resurgence in Peruvian cuisine, centred around the trend to cerviche - marinated raw fish with lime juice (much better than it sounds!) - and Pisco sours, a cocktail to rival caipirinhas and mojitos as Latin Americas favourite tipple.
One thing previously missing from Peru's luxury holiday armoury was a decent coastal option to provide a full house of beach, city, mountains, desert and jungle, but the emergence of Mancora as a hip new surf and social scene hangout means visitors really have got the perfect combo. What are you waiting for?
|The Sacred Valley|
|Arequipa & Colca Canyon|
|Paracas, Nazca & Ica|
|The Peruvian Amazon|